Everyone who teaches behavioural interviewing is quick to note that past behaviour is the best predictor of future behaviour.
But are you the same person now that you were in high school or even college?
We all evolve. Hopefully, we all learn from the past. Optimistically, we may be able to avoid repeating the same old mistakes as we get older. Who knows? Maybe we can even retain lessons of past successes and carry those secrets with us into the future, so that we get better and better over time.
So does the adage about past behaviour predicting the future really hold true?
What gives the adage some heft is the notion of a time frame.
How recently did I demonstrate a particular behaviour?
Want more heft? Throw in the notion of frequency.
Anyone can demonstrate a behaviour (desired or otherwise) once, but do we do it more often than that? Do we do it all the time?
In other words, the adage should be amended: Past behaviour, demonstrated recently and with frequency, is the best predictor of future behaviour.
Let’s say you have two job candidates. Both have demonstrated the important behaviours you’re looking for. The one who has done it more recently and more frequently is more likely to so on the job. If that person has demonstrated those behaviours in a number of different situations, even better.
Scoring on behavioural interviews has to reflect all three components: Behaviour, recency, and frequency. This will allow you to differentiate between candidates you’d like to think have the right stuff, and those that actually do.